Dogs and Barbecues
Ahhhh Spring! The weather starts to warm all across the country, the days are longer and sunnier, and we’re all generally in a better mood. One of our favorite warm weather activities? Barbecues! There’s nothing like meeting friends for delicious food and fun in the sun. And if you’re like us, you’ll want to bring your pup along too! So what exactly can we do to ensure that our pups enjoy the festivities safely? Read on for our tips.
FOOD SAFETYMake sure guests know not to feed your dog and to keep an eye on their food or dispose of it properly. Any trash bins should have secure lids that your pup cannot open or that won’t spill food if tipped over. If your pup is larger, place dishes toward the center of tables to keep them out of reach. Barbecue favorite foods like onion, avocado, grapes, and raisins can be toxic for your dog, and remember that bones are a no-go (they can cause cause choking and serious damage to their mouth, throat, or intestines). Keep poison control and your vet’s number saved to your phone’s contacts so you can call them in case of emergencies.
Can you feed your dogs during barbecues? Of course! Your dog loves food almost as much as you do, and there are plenty of options you can feed them! When giving them meat, make sure it isn’t greasy, saucy, or seasoned and feed them in moderation. You can also grill up some vegetables like zucchini or sweet potato. If you want to give them a cold treat, freeze up seedless watermelon or blueberries, or try your hand at these easy doggie ice cream recipes!
OTHER SAFETY PRECAUTIONSAs with every event, make sure your pets have updated identification tags and microchips. This improves your chances of being reunited should your dog escape from the backyard or park. You should also have a current photo just in case you need to make posters or share on social media.
Keep your pup cool. Just like humans, dogs can suffer from too much sun and heat. If it’s hot or humid, make sure they have access to plenty of shade and water. Also as a responsible pet parent, you should learn the signs of overheating.
If your pup is typically anxious during get-togethers, then leave them at home or create a safe indoor space with their favorite things. This could be a crate or bedroom with soft blankets, toys, and light music. If guests are coming over to your house and your pup LOVES a good party, make sure everyone knows you have a dog and to close doors or gates properly, and post signs as reminders. You’ll still want to create a safe space for your dog to have a break from all the excitement.
Make sure your pup stays away from the grill. Not only is the fire dangerous, but after you’ve finished cooking it is still hot. Curious pups might want to jump on the grill which could burn their paws. Keep lighter fluid, charcoal, and matches away as well.
If other dogs are in attendance, supervise interactions as they may become territorial around food or their humans. Keeping food and toys away from dogs can help keep the peace.
Whether you're getting together with friends and family for Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, or anytime the weather is warm, these tips can ensure that your pup can safely enjoy the festivities. And if our pups are happy and healthy, then we're happy. Let us know your tips in the comments below.